German Pectoral Cross Pendant Necklace from The Met Museum


This striking pendant evokes a spectacular pectoral cross (1900) in the Museum’s holdings. Designed to be worn on the chest near the heart, pectoral crosses are reserved for high officials of the Catholic Church, and have formed part of the episcopal regalia since the late Middle Ages. The original, crafted by the German jeweler Hemmerle (German, 1893-present), incorporates various medieval stylistic influences into a brilliant revival piece boasting exquisite filigree work, colorful enamels, gemstones, and pearls. It was unveiled in 1900 at the World Exhibition in Paris, where it was a star attraction and won a coveted prize.

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